It is often thought that individuals with poorer life circumstances live ‘risky’ lives and don’t listen to health campaigns. However, not all poorer people have poor health.
Rather than focusing on risk factors such as smoking, diet, depression, poor housing, lack of green space etc, it makes sense to look at assets, which involves identifying what individuals, communities and organisations are doing which acts positively on health and wellbeing.
Assets offer the potential to enhance quality and longevity of life through focusing on the resources that promote, for example, self-esteem and coping abilities.
We don’t currently understand assets or resources or how people and communities work together to promote health and wellbeing. If we can increase our knowledge we might unlock some of the existing barriers to effective action on health inequalities. For instance what are the people and communities who are typically thought to suffer poor health and wellbeing doing that we could help them to capitalise on to bring greater benefits.
We need to find out who isn’t ignoring the health messages the government promotes. What makes these people different? How are they resilient to the challenges that life throws at them?
All these issues are being explored by researchers in CRIPACC (Centre for Research in Primary and Community Care) at a conference in September 2011
If you would like to submit photos of things that help promote health or wellbeing in your lives for use as images during the conference you can send pictures here.